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Archive for the ‘Foot Care’ Category

Why Your Heels Are Damaging Your Toes!

Thursday, August 6th, 2015

As you are likely already aware, the joints in your body are where your bones meet. Most joints have to hold two bones together securely, while at the same time, allowing substantial movement without causing friction and wear between bones. To carry out their tasks, joints are made up of a complex combination of elastic tissue called cartilage to allow movement, strong fibrous tissue called ligaments to keep the bones together and lubricating fluid. The bones of the foot form a series of springy arches, which act as a platform for the support of the body. What if there is undue pressure on your toe joints? The platform may collapse!

The joints of the toes may give rise to a number of symptoms of arthralgia (joint pain), such as swelling, difficulty of movement or discolouration. Injuries may occur due to sprain, dislocation or fracture; but if there is no injury, then the pain could be the result of disease, some types of medication or ill-fitting shoes. Gout is a disease that especially attacks the big toe, and bunions are another culprit. Bunions are almost certainly caused by poor choice in footwear – primarily high heels or stilettos.

High heels and shoes that are a bad fit put pressure on the lower joint connecting the toe to the foot. Constant pressure and irritation causes a spur of bone to form, and this is then covered with a sac of fluid-filled tissue, called a bursa. The skin covering the pressure point often thickens into a corn or callus, adding to the pain. Ultra-high heels can force your feet into an unnatural position that puts pressure on the ball of the foot. At this critical joint, the long metatarsal bones meet the pea-shaped sesamoid bones, and the toe bones (phalanges). Too much pressure can inflame these bones or the nerves that surround them. Chronic stress to the foot bones can even lead to hairline fractures.

High heeled shoes push too much body weight toward the toes and then squeeze them together. Over time, the result can be hammertoe, which means abnormal bends in the toe joints that can gradually become rigid. Surgery is sometimes needed to relieve the pain of severe hammertoe. Crowding can cause other toe deformities, and crowding occurs in all of the above cases.

The same pressure can cause ingrown toenails, which are not only painful and unsightly, but can also lead to infection – sometimes severe. After healing occurs, wearing heels again can lead to a cycle of repeated ingrown toenails, increasing your chances of infection each time.

So how do you treat your feet? Is your ‘platform’ about to collapse?

Ditch the uncomfortable heels and over-tight shoes today to perform on this platform with feet that feel and look perfect!

Gone are the days of aching legs, corns and bunions behind us? Here are three chic shoe designers that you should be following:

  • Anyi Lu: Inspired shoewear – Anyi designs handmade Italian shoes for women who do not compromise when it comes to shoes. Her mission is to design shoes “that function as beautifully as they are fashioned”.
  • Dana Davis: Dana consults with podiatrists and foot and ankle surgeons to design her footwear
  • Taryn Rose: Created by an orthopaedic surgeon, these shoes are well cushioned, light, flexible and comfortable all day long.

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Foolproof Factors For Finding The Right Podiatrist

Wednesday, July 8th, 2015

Like with any other medical professional, it is in your best interest to develop an excellent rapport with your foot doctor. If he or she does not meet your expectations your treatment will be in jeopardy. Here are three factors to keep in mind when you search for a foot doctor.

1: Board Certification

All podiatric specialists undergo at least eight years of advanced training. In addition to general medical training, foot doctors complete three to four years of education in podiatric medicine as well as a three-year medical residency at an accredited hospital. However, this does not guarantee them board certification. Such a distinction is reserved for doctors who are further advanced in the field as well as the cleanest track record with patients.

Opting for a board-certified practitioner increases your chances of having your foot problems resolved. Due to the advanced experience, a board-certified podiatrist will have more insight into the treatment you need to expedite your cure. You can easily research whether a doctor is board-certified by finding his credentials online or calling his medical practice. This credential is public knowledge.

2: Hospital Affiliation

Though most foot physicians treat patients via their own private practice, they are usually affiliated with a local hospital. Hospital affiliation is important, especially if your foot or ankle will require surgery at some point during your treatment. Some doctors are affiliated with more than one hospital while others have no affiliation at all. It is worth your time to find out the specifics regarding this before scheduling your initial appointment. Unpleasant complications may arise if your chosen practitioner is affiliated with a hospital not covered by your medical insurance.

3: Extent Of Authorized Treatment

Within the field of podiatric medicine, there are numerous niches in which practitioners may specialize. One might specialize in sports medicine while another may be restricted to surgical procedures.

This is an important factor to consider since practitioners cannot legally treat patients outside of their specialty in most of the United States. In New York State, for example, a podiatrist cannot legally practice outside of his personal scope of competence. Each practitioner’s medical license clearly outlines his legal scope of competence according to his exact training, and if his treatment of a patient is outside of bounds, the license can be terminated for malpractice.

Thus, if your foot injury stems from an athletic accident, you will want to find a practitioner who works specifically within the field of sports medicine.

Finding the ideal foot doctor to accommodate your specific circumstances can be a bit tricky if you don’t keep the above factors in mind. Of course, it can be well worth it to seek out second opinions and to find a new doctor if the first one is not an adequate fit. However, the more time-consuming your search, the longer your foot problems persist..